It looks like people are not the only things coming from California to Asheville these days. This week marked the introduction of two California breweries to the Asheville market, Lagunitas Brewing Company out of Petaluma and Green Flash Brewing out of Vista, near San Diego. San Diego has become quite the beer city over the past decade or so, and they are home to such heralded breweries as Stone, Port Brewing, and Ballast Point. Well you can add Green Flash to this list as well.
An interesting aside is how Green Flash Brewing got its name. A green flash is an optical phenomenon that occurs when the sun sets, and is best seen with a good view of the horizon on a clear day when certain atmospheric conditions are present. As seen in this picture, a hovering green 'flash' occurs just over the setting sun for a few fleeting seconds. We may not be in the right locale to see a green flash, but we are fortunate that we can drink a great San Diego export while we dream about sitting on a west coast beach at sunset.
The appropriately named West Coast IPA is an excellent example of the tradition of highly hopped beers coming from that part of the country. The beer is unfiltered, so don't be alarmed by its hazy appearance, and it has a beautiful copper color. The taste is all about the hops, and it exhibits both grapefruit and piney flavors that make for a beer that any hop head will love. The malt is slightly sweet which helps to counteract the hop bitterness. This is truly one of the best 'west coast style' IPA's that I have had, and it is an excellent addition to our growing availability of good beers.